I pre-registered two new domain names last week at GoDaddy. Both of these domain names have meaning to me and my company, and I purchased them for the pre-registration price. This means that if someone else spends more to buy them sooner than me, they would get the right to them. In addition, if someone else pre registers either or both of these new domain names, they will go to a private auction.
A couple of days ago, I received an email from GoDaddy to let me know that one of the domain names couldn’t be purchased. The email said, “Your purchase could not be completed, therefore we will be refunding the cost of registration.” Upon cursory review, it seems that this domain name was registered by someone else at a different registrar. No big deal.
This morning, I received another email from GoDaddy about the second domain name. The company informed me that I would need to acknowledge a trademark claim in order to proceed with the purchase of this domain name. Here is the content of the email I received, with the domain name redacted for obvious reasons:
“Thanks for pre-registering [REDACTED]. Because the domain may be trademarked, please acknowledge the trademark claim by February 05, 2014 to avoid losing the chance to register your domain.
Simply go to the pre-registration manager at GoDaddy and acknowledge the trademark claim on [REDACTED] to complete your pre-registration. When you’re finished, we’ll process the claim check for you and let you know when the domain has been cleared and is ready for business in your account.
If you choose not to respond to the claim check, GoDaddy will send in the registration after April 29, 2014, if the domain name is still available.”
I thought it was pretty interesting that they sent this email on what is clearly a generic domain name. I don’t know whether it was the keyword(s) or the keyword(s) in conjunction with the extension that caused the trademark claim, but it certainly makes things a bit more confusing for the average Joe who might not have a lawyer on retainer to figure this out and determine whether or not it’s something to acknowledge or simply drop.